July 18, 2024

HIV Policy for Schools: Pre -K – 12

Hartford School District
Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre -K – 12
I. Preamble
The evidence is clear that the risk of transmitting Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
is extremely low in school settings when proper guidelines are followed. The presence
of a person living with HIV infection or diagnosed with Acquired Immunodeficiency
Syndrome (AIDS) poses no significant risk to others in school, daycare, or athletic
settings. HIV is not transmitted through casual contact. Therefore, is not reason in itself
to treat individuals having or perceived as having HIV differently from other members of
the school community. HIV is a Bloodborne pathogen and is treated as such in the same
manner as any other Bloodborne pathogen.
The Hartford School District shall strive to protect the safety and health of children and
youth in its care, and its employees, recognizing:
• the rights of students and employees with HIV;
• the importance of maintaining confidentiality regarding the medical condition of any
• the importance of an educational environment free of significant risks to health; and
• the necessity for HIV education and training for the school community and the
community-at- large.
II. Rights of Faculty/Staff for Equal Employment
The Hartford School District does not discriminate on the basis of an employee’s
HIV infection or association with another person with HIV infection. No applicant shall
be denied employment and no employee shall be prevented from continued employment
on the basis of having or being perceived as having HIV. 1 In accordance with the
Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, an employee with HIV infection is welcome to
continue working as long as he or she is able to perform the essential functions of the
position, with reasonable accommodations if necessary. 2
III. Rights of Students for School Attendance & Placement
A. A student with HIV infection has the same right to attend school and receive services
as any other student and will be subject to the same rules and policies as any student
without HIV. Except as deemed appropriate to accommodate students with disabilities,
an HIV infection shall not factor into decisions concerning class assignments, privileges,
or participation in any school-sponsored activity.3&4
V.S.A. § 495(a) (6) and (7)
U.S.C. §12101 et seq., American with Disabilities Act
3 29 U.S.C. § 794, 34 C.F.R. § 104.1 et seq., The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504)
4 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000d and 2000e, Title IV, Civil Rights Act of 1964 and as amended by the Equal Employment Act of
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
B. The designated school authorities will follow established procedures for students
with chronic health problems or disabilities to determine on a case-by-case basis the
educational placement of a student known to be infected with HIV.5 Respecting students’
and families’ privacy rights, school authorities may consult with the parent or guardian,
seek waiver from parent/guardian to consult with the student’s physician, and reassess
placement if there is a change in the student’s need for accommodations or services.
IV. Nondiscrimination Rights
A. The Hartford School District is committed to providing a learning environment and
workplace free of discrimination. School staff members will strive to maintain a
respectful school climate and not allow physical or verbal harassment against a student or
staff member based on their HIV positive status.6 This includes conduct directed against a
person living with HIV infection, a person perceived as having HIV infection or a student
or employee’s family member’s actual or perceived status as HIV positive.
B. This school district shall not discriminate against an applicant, prospective or current
student on the basis of a person’s having a positive test result from an HIV-related
diagnostic test. 7
V. Privacy and Confidentiality
A. The Hartford School District will protect the student’s and family’s privacy rights
consistent with state and federal law pursuant to the Hartford School District Student
Records Policy and Employment Records Policy.
B. No school official shall require HIV-related testing of any employee applicant, current
employee or prospective or current student for any purpose. 8
C. Designated authorities may request the Bloodborne pathogen status of an individual
who is the known source of body fluids in an exposure incident per the recommended
procedure of the USPHD protocol (see Occupational Exposure Control Plan Appendix)
for care in an exposure incident.
D. Students, parents/guardians, or applicants/employees are not required to disclose HIV
status to any school personnel. 9
E. The superintendent shall develop procedures which ensure confidentiality in the
maintenance and, where authorized, dissemination of all medically-related documents
(see Appendix A).
F. Information regarding HIV status will not be added to a student’s permanent
educational or health record without written consent.
U.S.C. §1400 et seq., 34 C.F.R. § 300, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
V.S.A. §1127(a); see also 16 V.S.A. §§11(a) (26); 14; 565 regarding discrimination based on disability
7 18 V.S.A. § 112 7
8 18 V.S.A. § 112 7(a)
9 18 V.S.A. § 112 7(b)
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
G. Service providers, including those dispensing medication, will maintain student
confidentiality. Unless for the limited purpose of an exception of state law, federal
law, the Student Records policy, or the Employee Records policy that applies, school
personnel shall not disclose any HIV-related information about a prospective or current
school personnel or students to anyone except in accordance with the terms of a written
consent. 10 The superintendent shall develop a written consent form (see Appendix
A) which provides for a description of information to be disclosed, to whom it may be
disclosed, its specified time limitation, and the specific purpose for the disclosure. The
school district shall not discriminate against any individual who does not provide written
H. All medical information in any way relating to the HIV status of any member of
the school community, including written documentation of discussions, telephone
conversations, proceedings, and meetings shall be kept in a locked file. Unless an
exception applies under federal law, state law, the Student Records Policy or the
Employment Records policy, access to this file shall be granted only to those persons
identified in writing by the student or parent/guardian and to emergency medical
personnel. Filing and photocopying of related documents may be performed only by
persons named in the written consent.
I. A written consent form shall be completed prior to each disclosure and release of HIV-
related information (sample attached).
J. Each disclosure made shall be noted in the student or employee’s personal file.
The list of such disclosures shall be made available to the student, parent/guardian, or
employee upon request.
K. Schools shall comply with Vermont Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(VOSHA) rule §1910.20 which concerns maintenance of and access to employee medical
records. [note: §1910.20 is incorporated by reference into §1810.1030(h).]
VI. Health Protections and Universal Precautions
A. Hartford School District shall comply with applicable Vermont Occupational
Safety and Health Administration (VOSHA) rules in order to protect employees who are
reasonably anticipated to be exposed to Bloodborne pathogens as part of their regular job
All employees shall consistently follow universal precautions guidelines on school
property at all times, including at school-sponsored events, on school playgrounds and on
school buses (see Appendix C.)
V.S.A. § 317(b)(7) and (11)
U.S.C. § 1232g The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, 1974 (FERPA)
12 29 U.S.C. §§653, 655, and 657 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
B. The superintendent or his/her designee shall determine those employees (by job class
and possibly by task or procedure) who are reasonably anticipated to have occupational
exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials as part of their duties. These
employees will be protected in strict accordance with the provisions of the Bloodborne
Pathogens Standards.13
C. Students and staff not covered by the Bloodborne Pathogens Standard shall be
instructed to avoid contact with potentially infectious materials and blood and shall
immediately contact a member of the staff who is covered by and trained in the exposure
control plan. When this is not possible, any person providing assistance shall follow
universal precautions (see Appendix C).
D. A written Exposure Control Plan concerning bloodborne pathogens, which includes
the use of universal precautions, shall be developed, maintained and followed.14
VII. Student Health Services:
A. All students will have access to voluntary, confidential, age and developmentally
appropriate counseling about matters related to HIV infection.
B. School administrators will maintain referral information to facilitate confidential and
voluntary student access to HIV counseling, testing, and other HIV-related services.
C. Public information about resources in the community will be kept available for
voluntary student use.
D. In the event that the school nurse determines that a student has had an exposure to
blood or OPIM as defined in the districts VOSHA Exposure Control Plan, the parents/
guardians will be notified immediately and advised to consult the child’s physician at
VIII. Curriculum, Instruction and Extra -Curricular Activities
A. HIV/AIDS Prevention Education
The school district shall provide systematic and extensive elementary and secondary
comprehensive health education including education on HIV infection, other sexually
transmitted diseases as well as other communicable diseases, and the prevention of
disease.15 The superintendent shall designate a coordinator to oversee the district's HIV
education plans and programs.
U.S.C. §§653, 655, and 657 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970
C.F.R. § 1910.1030 Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens Standard
15 16 V.S.A. § 131 et seq., § 906
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
1. The comprehensive health education program will:
• be provided in accordance with the Vermont Department of Education
• be taught at every level, kindergarten through grade 12;
• be consistent with community standards;
• include current HIV epidemiology, methods of transmission and prevention,
universal precautions, and psycho-social aspects of HIV;
• be appropriate to students’ developmental levels, behaviors, and cultural
• build knowledge and skills from year to year;
• stress the benefits of abstinence from sexual activity, alcohol, and other drug
• include accurate information on reducing risk of HIV infection;
• address students’ own concerns;
• include means for evaluation;
• be an integral part of a part of a skills-based comprehensive health education
• be taught by well-prepared instructors; and
• involve parents and families as partners in education.
IX. Athletics
Participation in physical education classes, athletic programs, competitive sports,
and recess is not conditioned on a person’s HIV status. School authorities will make
reasonable accommodations to allow students living with HIV infection to participate in
school-sponsored physical activities.16
A. All employees shall consistently adhere to infection control guidelines in locker rooms
and all play and athletic settings. Rule books will reflect these guidelines. First-aid kits
will be on hand at every athletic event.
B. All physical education teachers and athletic program staff will complete an approved
first-aid and injury prevention course that includes implementation of infection control
C. Student orientation about safety on the playing field will include guidelines for
avoiding HIV infection.
X. Policy Dissemination:
1. On an annual basis, school administrators will notify students, their family members,
and school personnel about current policies concerning HIV infection, and provide
convenient opportunities to discuss them.
U.S.C. § 794, 34 C.F.R. § 104.1 et seq., The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504)
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Written Consent Form for Each Release of Confidential HIV* Related Information
Confidential HIV-Related Information is any information that a person had an HIV-
related test, has HIV infection, HIV-related illness or AIDS*, or has been potentially
exposed to HIV. If you sign this form, HIV-related information can be given to the
people listed and for the reasons listed below.
Name and address of person whose HIV-related information can be released:
Name and address of person signing this form (if other than above): Relationship to person whose HIV-
related information may be released:
Name, title or role, and the address of each person who may be given HIV-related information (include
names of persons responsible for photocopying and filing confidential information):
Additional names and addresses can be attached or listed on back.)
Information to be provided: (Check as many as apply.)
_____ HIV antibody test result
_____ AIDS diagnosis
_____ summarized medical record
_____ details of symptoms, signs, and/or diagnostic results
(specify: _____________________________________________________)
_____ psychiatric, other mental health, and/or developmental evaluation records
(specify: _____________________________________________________)
_____ names of medical care and/or support service providers
(specify: ______________________________________________________)
_____ infection status of other family members [Requires written consent]
_____ student's instructional program
_____ other (specify:__________________________________________________)
Specific purpose(s) for release of HIV-related information
Time during which release of information is authorized: (A specific time must be noted for each single
incidence of release of HIV-related information. Use a new form for each incident.) From: To:
Any disclosure of information not meeting the conditions listed above is expressly prohibited. Disclosure to
any other persons than those listed above requires my informed, written consent.
Signature _______________________________
Date ________________________
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
*Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) that causes Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Appendix B
Authorization for Release of Medical Information
Date: ________________
To: Primary Care Provider
(name & address)
From: Parent/Guardian
Please send information about my child ____________________________________
whose date of birth is _____________________ to:
Health Services Office
School: _____________________________________
Address: ____________________________________
State & Zip: _________________________________
Please send all pertinent information regarding ________________________________
Signature of Parent/Guardian: _______________________________________________
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Universal Precautions for School Staff and Independent
Bloodborne Pathogens
Research shows that the risk of
getting a significant contagious
disease in a school setting is
extremely small. However, school
staff and contracted personnel in
the school need to decrease the
possibility of exposure to
bloodborne pathogens.
Significant contagious disease
(SCD) includes cytomegalovirus
(CMV), hepatitis B virus (HBV)
and human immunodeficiency
virus (HIV) infections. The local
board of health or the state health
officer may determine that other
diseases are significant contagious
diseases. 1
“Universal Precautions” means
protecting oneself from exposure
to blood or body fluids through the
use of latex gloves**, masks or
eye goggles; cleaning blood and
body fluid spills with soap and
bleach solution and water; and
disinfecting and incinerating or
decontaminating infected waste
before disposing in a sanitary
None of these are Modes of
Transmission of Bloodborne Pathogens
Sharing Restrooms
Bathroom Fixtures
Drinking Fountains
Eating with Carriers
Working & Studying with Carriers
Playing with Carriers
Swimming Pools
Shaking Hands
Eating Food Prepared by Carriers
Modes of Transmission
"The two common methods of spreading
HIV are having sex with an infected
individual and using contaminated needles
to inject drugs." (Surgeon General's
Report to the American Public on HIV
Infection and AIDS)
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Appendix C pg. 2
Universal Precautions in the School Setting
Reduce the risk of exposure to bloodborne pathogens by using universal precautions to
prevent contact with blood and body fluids.*
• Whenever blood and body fluids are present, a barrier (latex rubber gloves**, thick layer
of paper towels, or cloth) should be used to minimize exposure of the attending person
while the injury is cleansed and/or dressed.
• Soiled clothes of the injured person must be bagged to be sent home.
• Place waste in a plastic bag for disposal.
• Remove gloves and dispose in plastic bag.
• Thoroughly wash hands with soap.
• Whenever cleaning and disinfecting environmental surfaces in which blood and body fluids
are present, a barrier (rubber utility gloves durable enough to withstand environmental cleaning
and disinfecting, thick layer of paper towels, or cloth) should be placed between the blood and
attending person.
• Use disposable paper towels or other disposable materials to remove blood and body fluids.
• Disinfect the affected area(s) and cleaning tools with a commercial tuberculocidal
disinfectant (mixed according to manufacturer's specifications) or bleach solution approximately
1/4 cup common household bleach per gallon of tap water, mixed fresh daily). 2 The affected
surface being disinfected should remain wet for several minutes.
• Secure all waste in plastic bag for disposal.
• Remove gloves and dispose secured in a plastic bag.
• Immediately apply soap. Thoroughly wash hands with soap by rubbing hands together
(avoiding scrubbing hands). Pay particular attention to finger tips, nails and jewelry. Rinse with
fingers pointing downward.
• If running water and soap are not immediately available, a waterless antiseptic cleaner or
moist towelette may be used until hands can be thoroughly washed (use of antiseptic cleaner or
towelette is NOT a substitute for hand washing.)
** Non-latex gloves should be available for any staff member who has a known latex allergy.
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guideline for Prevention of Transmission of Human Immunodeficiency Virus and Hepatitis B Virus to Health-
care and Public Safety
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Appendix D
Annotated Legal References
1. 1 V.S.A. §317 (7) and (11) - Subsections (7) and (11) are two exceptions to the Vermont law
requiring disclosure of public records. Subsection (7) deals with medical records of employees and
subsection (11) deals with student records at public schools.
2. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. §794) - This federal law (popularly known
as "Section 504") prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities by entities receiving
federal funds.
3. 18 V.S.A. §112 (7) - This Vermont public health law prohibits school districts from requiring HIV
testing of any applicant, or prospective or current students and prohibits discrimination against an
applicant, or prospective or current student on the ground that the person has tested HIV positive.
4. 21 V.S.A. §495(a)(6) and (7) - These provisions prohibit employers, employment agencies,
labor organizations and persons seeking employees from discriminating against persons who have
a positive test result on an HIV-related blood test and from requiring employees or prospective
employees to take an HIV-related blood test as a condition of employment, membership,
classification, placement or referral.
5. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. §1400, et sew.) - This federal law
(popularly known as "IDEA" or "P.L. 94-142") requires states and school districts to provide special
education and related services to eligible students with disabilities.
6. Title VI, Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended by the Equal Employment Act of 1972 (42 U.S.C.
§§2000d and 2000e) - These federal provisions authorize enforcement of Section 504 through
the federal courts by clarifying that 11th Amendment immunity is unavailable in such cases and
makes available administrative remedies to aggrieved parties. Further, these provisions provide the
enforcement mechanisms for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
7. Americans with Disabilities Act (42 U.S.C. §12101, et seq.) - This federal law (popularly known as
the "ADA") prohibits discrimination in, among other areas, employment and education on the basis of
a disability.
8. 16 V.S.A. §131, et seq. and 16 V.S.A. §906 - These Vermont laws require each public and
independent school to provide students with a minimum course of study in "comprehensive health
education," including education on "HIV infection, other sexually transmitted diseases, as well
as other communicable diseases, and the prevention of disease." Additionally, these laws permit
the appointment of a community advisory council to assist school boards in developing and
implementing comprehensive health education programs.
9. Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 - This federal law (popularly known nationally
as "OSHA" and in Vermont as "VOSHA") requires safe working conditions in places of employment.
In particular, 29 U.S.C. §§653, 655, and 657 form the basis for the issuance of OSHA regulations on
dealing with bloodborne pathogens in the workplace.
10. Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens Standard (29 C.F.R. §1910.1030) - This federal
regulation requires employers to develop and maintain a written Exposure Control Plan concerning
bloodborne pathogens and requires the taking of "universal precautions."
11. 21 V.S.A. §§201 and 224 - These state statutes make Vermont law on Occupational Safety and
Health consistent with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (see paragraph #9
12. 20 U.S.C. §1232(g) The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, 1974 (FERPA) protects the
privacy of students and parents.
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12
Appendix E
Resources for HIV/AIDS Assistance and Information
Vermont Department of Education
(802) 828-5151
For local assistance, contact the Health Education Resource Center nearest you:
Brattleboro - (802) 254-4511
South Burlington - (802) 864-4789
St. Johnsbury - (802) 748-8912
Rutland - (802) 775-4314
Vermont Occupational Safety and Health Administration (VOSHA) 800-640-0601 a division
of the Vermont Department of Health that supports and regulates workplace safety.
Vermont Department of Health (Hotline) 800-882-AIDS
The Hotline provides information and referral about all HIV-related issues.
American Red Cross Vermont Chapters
Serves all groups with a wide variety of informational resources available at low or no
cost, including videos, curricula, and public health materials. Speakers and trainings on
the following subjects are also available. Subjects covered include: HIV transmission and
prevention, AIDS in the workplace, confidentiality, universal precautions, bloodborne
pathogens and exposure control planning, and first aid.
• Green Mountain – 800-288-3554 (serving Southern Vermont)
• Northern Vermont - 800-660-9130
• Central Vermont - (802) 773-9159
AIDS Service Organizations
These organizations may provide some of the following services: educational programs and
training, speaker's bureaus, support and services for people affected by HIV/AIDS; and/or
community advocacy. Contact the organization closest to you.
A Community Resource Network (ACORN) serving Windsor and Orange Counties
(603) 448-8887 or 800-816-2220
Comprehensive Care Clinic Northeast Vermont Regional Medical Center serving Caledonia,
Essex and Orleans Counties (802) 751-7603 (St. Johnsbury)
Bennington Area AIDS Project serving Bennington County 800-845-AIDS (2437)
AIDS Project of Southern Vermont serving Windham and Southern Counties (802) 254-4444
Vermont C.A.R.E.S. serving Chittenden, Addison, Rutland, Lamoille, Washington, Franklin,
and Grand Isle Counties (802) 863-AIDS (2437) (office and general hotline)
Vermont People With AIDS (PWA) Coalition 800-698-8792 or (802) 229-5754
The Coalition is a statewide organization of and for people living with HIV. The Coalition
frequently provides HIV+ speakers for schools.
HSD Comprehensive HIV Policy for Schools: Pre K - 12